The Liberation of Cruinne Part 3

Posted: August 24, 2010 in The Liberation of Cruinne
Tags: , , , ,

“General.”

Hasios stared at his men slowly gathering on the grassy plain below. They were congregating from three points, mainly by divisions. Archers, infantry and special units. He felt like a chess player about to unveil his master strategy to a novice.

“General.”

Standing atop this high hill, Hasios had never felt so free in his life. The breeze blew through his long, thick hair, and he raised his arms to his sides then let them drop. Gazing to the north at the far-off mountain range of Elikizm, he imagined being in the snows of the mountain known as Rek. Turning to the east where the elves of Nilar-Kepoto dwelled, he thought of walking through the forests. To the west where the dwarves of the high hills of Soahg plied their skills. All the time with Jilier.

Jilier.

Jilier! Hasios watched until he could look no more, then turned away as she fell. Jilier!

And finally to the southwest, where the self-proclaimed Baron Lord Olc waited with his army. But wait no more! Today was the day that Hasios struck back with a vengeful strike. No longer would Olc hide in the shadows, evading Hasios’ every attempt to bring him down! Today would be the day that—

“General!”

Interrupted from his reverie, Hasios turned to face Coron. “Yes?”

Jilier.

“The troops have all formed up. We’re just awaiting your orders.”

“Tell them…tell them to stay in the formation previously ordered. I will be there shortly.”

Coron saluted and went off to relay the order.

Jil—No! He would not let himself become distracted with wild thoughts! Hasios’ face buckled, tears coming to his eyes, only to let them go back to where they came from. Regaining his composure, he walked down to where his troops waited. Arriving at a stage, he slowly walked up the steps then turned to face his whole army.

“It doesn’t feel right to be standing up here with the rest of you down there. I am just a man, and I am no better than any of you. I’m just your leader.” So saying, Hasios leaped from the top of the stage (it wasn’t very high) and began walking amongst the fighters, talking as he went.

“When I began my campaign against Olc, I knew there were people who were disgruntled with him. Some thought taxes were too high, some wanted to keep the grain that they grew instead of having to give up half of it. Some just hated him because they could. I knew I would be able to put together a guerilla force of a hundred to two hundred men and make small strikes. Liberate a garrison here, free a farm there, all the while gathering more and more troops, until finally being vast enough to take down Olc.”

He stopped for a moment.

“But what I didn’t anticipate was the amount of sympathy I received from the people. From all over Old Cruinne people came, telling me of the cruel oppression from Olc and their desire for justice. And then the dragons came to me, explaining how they heard of Olc and his cruel ways and wanted to help in our fight for good. Then the elves came out from hiding and joined me, knowing it was the right thing to do, as did the centaurs.”

“Then last night I had some visitors. They were shorter than most, but they seemed like true warriors, fighters every one. They wished to join us in our fight. I immediately said yes. And if you haven’t guessed by now, I’m talking about the dwarves of the west.”

Silence. Then from the back, clapping. Then it was joined from the right, then the left, and soon the whole army was cheering their new allies. The dwarves walked out from their hiding place along with the elves and centaurs and took their stations. The dragons flapped overhead, their heavy wings sounding like many birds all flapping at once.

Hasios’ voice rang out.

“Thank you my friends. However, if you find that you cannot fight against Olc, you may stay behind. Are there any that wish to do so?”

No one moved. They had come this far. Why leave now when all they had worked for was at stake?

Hasios nodded, their grim task before them. “We march at dawn tomorrow. Be ready, all of you. This is not going to be easy. They outnumber us by many, and at last estimate, they had more than five hundred million troops ready for battle. However, with our troop strength of ten thousand, plus the one hundred thousand dwarf crusaders, fifty thousand elven archers and whirlers, we have less of a disadvantage. They outnumbered us fifty thousand to one. But we have shrunk that to three thousand one hundred and twenty-five to one!”

The task seemed impossible.

“I know that seemed like a lot of math.”

“But we also have the dragons.”

Breath came collectively out in a whoosh of air.

“We all have trained for this day. Strategies have been set. Reports have it that Olc’s troops are untrained except for his elite guard. He has not planned strategies as we have. That is our advantage. And we are also fighting for something else. Do you know what it is?”

The roar came like the ocean crashing on the shore.

“CRUINNE!”

Hasios, standing in front of them all, raised his arms for silence.

“And so it begins.”

______________________________________________

Feedback on the update is appreciated!

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Comments
  1. Excellent, as always. The repetition of the name Jilier is a great device!

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